OTT Platforms

Why HEVC is the Best Video Format for OTT Platforms

If you’re running an OTT platform, then you know that video quality is essential. The better the quality, the more likely your viewers will stick around. So, what’s the best video format for OTT platforms? The answer is HEVC.

Over-the-top (OTT) platforms quickly become the go-to for video content consumption. And as more and more people cut the cord and ditch traditional cable TV in favor of streaming services, it’s essential to know which video format is best suited for OTT delivery.

That format is HEVC. Here’s why.

What is HEVC?

HEVC stands for High-Efficiency Video Coding. It’s a next-generation video codec that offers significantly improved compression over its predecessor, H.264. What does that mean in terms of real-world applications?

It means that files encoded with HEVC can be up to twice as small as files encoded with H.264 while maintaining the same quality level.

That’s a massive deal for OTT platform providers who need to deliver high-quality video content without using up too much bandwidth.

Why is HEVC Important for OTT?

There are two main reasons why HEVC is so crucial for OTT platforms.

As we’ve already mentioned, HEVC offers much better compression than H.264.

This means that files encoded with HEVC can be delivered using less bandwidth, which is crucial for OTT providers who need to ensure their videos can stream smoothly on various devices with different connection speeds.

HEVC offers better quality at lower bitrates than H.264. Again, this is crucial for OTT providers who need to provide their customers with the best possible viewing experience while minimizing bandwidth costs.

HEVC offers several benefits over other video formats, such as H.264:

HEVC is much more efficient, which means it can provide the same level of quality at a lower bit rate. This is important because your videos can stream without buffering, even on slower internet connections.

HEVC is better at compressing 4K and 8K video content, so you can deliver ultra-high-definition content without sacrificing quality.

HEVC is future-proof; as internet speeds continue to increase and more people move to 4K and 8K displays, HEVC will be able to keep up.

In short, if you’re looking for the best video format for your OTT platform, look no further than HEVC.

It offers several advantages in terms of quality, efficiency, and compatibility, making it the ideal choice for any OTT platform.

When choosing the best video format for your OTT platform, there are a few things to consider.

We’ll break down the best video format for OTT platforms so you can make the best decision for your business.

You first need to consider the type of content you want to deliver. Are you looking to provide live or on-demand content?

If you’re looking to deliver live content, you’ll need a format that can support live streaming. The most popular live-streaming formats are HLS and DASH.

If you’re looking to deliver on-demand content, you have more leeway in format.

The most popular on-demand formats are MP4 and WebM.

Another thing to consider is the variety of devices your audience will use to consume your content.

Make sure your chosen video format is compatible with your audience’s devices.

For example, if you’re targeting mobile users, you’ll want a format compatible with mobile devices like iPhones and Android smartphones.

You must consider the quality of the video content you want to deliver. Not all video formats are created equal in terms of quality.

Some formats, like H264, offer high-quality video at a lower bitrate, while others, like VP9, offer lower-quality video at a higher bitrate.

Finding a balance between quality and file size is essential when choosing a video format for your OTT platform.

Quality Matters

When it comes to video streaming, quality matters, nobody wants to watch a pixelated, low-resolution video—especially not on a big-screen TV.

That’s why H.264 is such an excellent option for OTT platforms; it offers high-quality video without sacrificing file size or requiring excessive bandwidth.

H.264 is so efficient that it can deliver 1080p HD video at just 1 Mbps. That’s why it’s the go-to format for many streaming services, including Netflix and Hulu.

File Size Matters, Too

In addition to quality, file size also matters in OTT platforms.

That’s because OTT platform providers need to be able to store large numbers of videos without taking up too much space—and that’s precisely what H.264 does.

Thanks to its advanced compression algorithms, H.264 can reduce the file size of your videos by up to 80% without sacrificing quality.

That means more storage capacity and faster load times for your viewers.

The Best Video Format for OTT Platforms


MP4 is short for MPEG-4 Part 14. It’s a digital multimedia container format for storing video and audio files.

MP4 is a relatively new format; it was first standardized in 2003 by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO).

MP4 files are typically compressed to make them smaller and more manageable; however, this compression can result in lower video quality.

MP4 files can also encrypt for added security. One of the main advantages of MP4 is that it can play on just about any device, thanks to its widespread compatibility.


WebM is an open media file format that was first announced in 2010. It was designed specifically for web use cases, and as such, it’s well-suited for OTT platforms.

WebM files are based on the Matroska multimedia container and use VP8 or VP9 codecs for video compression and Opus or Vorbis codecs for audio compression.

WebM files can also be encrypted with advanced encryption standard (AES) 128-bit encryption.

The main advantage of WebM is that it delivers high-quality video while still providing relatively small file sizes—smaller file sizes mean quicker load times and less buffering during playback.

In addition, WebM files can play on all major browsers without needing plugins or third-party software.


AVI is short for Audio Video Interleave, one of the oldest digital video formats; it was developed back in 1992 by Microsoft.

AVI files use various codecs to compress audio and video data; as such, they can vary significantly in size and quality.

One of the main advantages of AVI is that it offers excellent cross-platform compatibility—AVI files can play on Windows, macOS, Linux, and more.

However, AVI files are not well suited for streaming due to their large file size; furthermore, some newer devices—such as smartphones—may be unable to play AVI files.

The best video format for OTT platforms is H.264/MPEG-4 AVC. This video format is widely used by OTT providers such as Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, and more.

H.264/MPEG-4 AVC is a high-quality video format that delivers excellent video quality at low bitrates. This makes it ideal for streaming over the internet.

H.264/MPEG-4 AVC is compatible with many devices, including computers, smartphones, and tablets.

In addition to H.264/MPEG-4 AVC, another popular video format for OTT platforms is VP9. VP9 is an open-source video format that Google developed.

VP9 is similar to H.264/MPEG-4 AVC in terms of quality and compression efficiency.

However, VP9 has advantages over H.264/MPEG-4 AVC, such as supporting higher resolution videos and more efficient encoding of videos with complex scenes.

Many devices, including computers, smartphones, and tablets, also support VP9.

Regarding streaming video on demand (VoD), H.264 is still the most widely used codec.

That’s because it offers a good balance between quality and file size. It’s also compatible with many devices, including smart TVs, set-top boxes, computers, and mobile devices.

However, if you’re looking for the best video quality, consider using HEVC (High-Efficiency Video Coding).

HEVC offers better compression than H.264, which means you can achieve the same quality with a smaller file size. The trade-off is that HEVC is more processor-intensive, so it may only be compatible with some devices.

If you’re looking to stream live video, you’ll need to use a different codec. The most popular live-stream codec is HLS (HTTP Live Streaming).

HLS is an adaptive bitrate protocol, meaning the video quality will adapt based on the viewer’s internet connection speed.

This ensures viewers with slower internet connections can watch your live stream without buffering issues.

Another advantage of HLS is that most major platforms, including YouTube, Facebook Live, and Twitch, support it.


When choosing a video format for your OTT platform, there’s only one choice: HEVC.

HEVC is more efficient than other formats like H.264, so you can stream videos without buffering or sacrificing quality.

HEVC can easily handle 4K and 8K content and is future-proof as internet speeds continue to increase and more people adopt 4K and 8K displays.

If you’re looking for the best video format for your OTT platform, look no further than HEVC!

As the demand for content streaming continues to grow, it is more important than ever for OTT platforms to choose the best video format.

HEVC offers several advantages over other formats, including smaller file sizes, better compression efficiency, and compatibility with 4K and HDR content.

For these reasons, HEVC is the best choice for any OTT platform that wants to provide its users with the highest-quality video experience.

Contact us today if you want to learn more about how we can help your OTT platform succeed.

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